We’re all creatures of habit, we tend to wake up at the same time, brush our teeth, have a shower, make a morning coffee, and begin our day. But what if we want to form new healthy habits, like wake up even earlier and do a morning workout, or add more vegetables in to our diet? Often, we can form these habits for a few days before they start to wane and we’re back to square one. Building healthy habits into our everyday lives is do able, but there are a few tips that can help make these stick and become part of your every day.
- Set small goals – Like anything in life, big changes can have a big impact on us mentally and physically and can be quite overwhelming. To make changes, starting small is best. If your habit is to be more active or have an exercise regime in place, start with a walk around the block each day, or if you want to eat more vegies pop a carrot in your bag too munch on during the day. Make the habit something that is achievable, and you’ll find it’s easier to build on.
- Remove obstacles – Life is busy enough with work, kids, relationships, and so much more. If building a new habit in to your life is important, you want to take away any stress from getting in the way of that not happening. For example, the morning routine of getting yourself, as well as family members, ready in the morning can be the most chaotic time of the day. If you want to go to the gym or go for a walk early, place your exercise outfit and shoes next to your bed so you are ready to go. If you want to eat better during the day, make your lunch or pack healthy snacks ready to go so you don’t have to deal with it in the morning.
- Reward yourself – Making healthy changes in your life is a big deal, you should feel proud. So, make sure you congratulate yourself. You could set goals for these rewards, for example, if you decided to run for 10 mins every day for 30 days, then you could reward yourself with a pair of snazzy new running shoes. Or set up a walking date with a friend and your reward is spending time with your friend. Whatever you choose for your reward, don’t make it an unhealthy one i.e., if I go for a run, I can have a piece of cake. When choosing rewards, we want these to also be healthy.
- Avoid bad habits where possible – Make a note of what triggers a bad habit. If you’re trying to eat less sugar, think about when in your day you tend to eat it. Is it when you’re driving, during an afternoon slump, or after dinner? Once you address a trigger it’s easier to form ways of how to avoid it. Make sure you have nuts, fruit, or vegie sticks in the car to snack on. If you feel tired in the afternoon instead of going for that sugary treat, head outside for a breath of fresh air. After dinner, make yourself a cup of herb tea instead. Choose something that will work for you, and it could help fill that bad habit void.